Uneven Rainfalls Expected for Rainy Season: Ministry

A huge rainfall pouring over a portion of Phnom Penh. Photo: Ky Chamna

PHNOM PENH – The Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology said on May 29 that the coming rainy season will face lower rainfall than last year.

As per a measurement taken at the Bassac-Chaktomuk Hydrological Station, the water level of the Mekong River is only 8.35 meters, which is 1.3 meters lower than the 9.65 meters measured last year at the same time.

According to the ministry, the reason for this low level of water is due to the weather situation in areas under the influence of the “El Niño” phenomenon.

It refers to the warm phase of the surface seawater in the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean which can have tremendous effects on the weather over the whole Asia-Pacific region.

“The rapid evolution of El Niño has recently led to uneven rainfall distribution for the start of the rainy season”, the ministry said. “While some places have only experienced light rainfalls, others saw moderate to heavy rains.”

While the El Niño effect was average from January to April, its intensity is expected to rise from May to November, the ministry warned.

Such a trend is likely to translate into less rainfall over the Lower Mekong Basin during these months, which coincide with the rainy season.

The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) and the Water Resources Ministry have monitored water levels regularly and have started to seek measures to respond to the water situation in the future, Soth Kimkolmony, NCDM spokesperson said on May 29.

“In responding to the water level situation, the committee and the ministry are preparing to set out measures, such as instructing the people to pay attention to and use water properly, to avoid any water shortage problem,” he said.

Originally written in Khmer for ThmeyThmey, this story was translated by Meng Seavmey for Cambodianess.

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